Friday, September 18, 2015
Free things to do this fall in Bloomington
This list was unreasonably difficult to create. Not because there aren't enough free things to do this fall, but because there are way too many good ones and if I included all the ones I want to go to, this blog post would break the internet. So I'll keep it simple ish, and you can fill up your social calendar with cool stuff to do that's completely free. Make your Btown getaway ultra-affordable with these hotel discounts.
Sports and Recreation
Enjoy the season that is arguably the most beautiful time in Bloomington before it's too cold to be outside for long. Here are some great free things to do outside:
- IU Women's Soccer games: a few dates are October 3 vs. Iowa, October 18 vs. Ohio State, and October 28 vs. Purdue
- Hike through the Charles Deam Wilderness up to the firetower for a spectacular view
- Best places to see fall colors
- Bloomington Community Farmers' Market every Saturday morning at City Hall, including Fiesta del Otoño on September 26
- Open Streets Bloomington in Prospect Hill on September 20
You definitely won't get bored with this line-up, and there's way more than I could include here, so check out the full events calendar to see what else is going on.
- Jacobs School of Music concerts: a few examples include Notus Contemporary Music Ensemble on October 7, Latin American Ensemble on October 15, Concentus and Baroque Orchestra on October 25, and the Chamber Orchestra on November 11
- Free events at the Lotus World Music & Arts Festival (September 24-27) include the Festival Arts Village, Lotus in the Park and the Seeing Red: World Textiles exhibit at the Ivy Tech John Waldron Arts Center - read more in our blog post about Lotus 2015 highlights
- Frequent live music (especially jazz and classical) at Topo's 403, a tasty Greek/mediterranean restaurant: a few shows include classical guitar with Atanas Tsvetkov on September 26, Postmodern Jazz Quartet on October 17, and jazz piano with Monika Herzig on November 6
- Noon concerts at the IU Art Museum, like Şimdi Ensemble on September 25
Visual Arts & Film
There are always new exhibits at local museums and galleries, plus some awesome special events that you can only catch once a month or annually.
- Artisan Guilds of Bloomington holiday show and sale, November 6-7
- Great Glass Pumpkin Patch on October 10 (browse for free; the handmade pumpkins are for sale)
- First Friday and Gallery Walk on first Fridays of the month (Gallery Walk is every other month)
- For Love or Money exhibit at the Kinsey Institute
- A Fair of the Arts at the Farmers' Market on October 10
- Bloomington Handmade Market on November 14
- Movies at the IU Cinema, like Queer Mythologies film shorts, part of the new Wounded Galaxies Festival of experimental media, on October 9
Family and Kids
In addition to all the kid-friendly stuff above, here are a few events specifically for the young'ins:
- Teen Night at WonderLab: Doctor Who on September 25, Zombies on October 23, Mockingjay on November 20
- IU Science Fest on October 24
- Dia de los Muertos Community Altar at the Mathers Museum of World Cultures, October 7 - November 1
- Halloween Family Fun Fest at the Mathers Museum on October 31 -- for more Halloween events, see our blog post about Halloween 2015 in Bloomington
Indiana University Homecoming Weekend
While the football game is ticketed, there's so much to do at homecoming, even if you're not an IU alum. The parade on October 16th is definitely worth experiencing, plus there's a women's soccer game on the 15th, special exhibitions at the IU Art Museum, and free concerts all weekend.